League brawl sparks bans, fines
Canterbury Rugby League today revealed that two 18-month suspensions are part of a raft of bans handed out as fallout continues from a nasty brawl in Kaiapoi.
The coaches of the under-16 Celebration Lions, Glen Bradbrook, and Kaiapoi's Northern Bulldogs, Mathias Pitama, have been banned from participating as a player or league official until January 1, 2014.
Both were fingered at the main protagonists in the brawl at Murphy Park on May 12 that had been the subject of a lengthy inquiry.
Police were called to separate the two warring clubs when spectators got involved in the melee, and CRL general manager Craig Kerr said: "The reports [on the incident] I'm afraid did not make good reading, with a number of seasoned and experienced rugby league people stating that this was the worst incident they had ever experienced.
"The judicial panel felt that the behaviour of some team officials and both teams was at the top end of the scale, and this has been reflected in the sanctions handed down.
''A strong message has been sent to the clubs that the behaviour of its players, officials and supporters on the day was unacceptable and will not be tolerated."
As well as the coaches, Bulldogs players Logan Winter and Taylor Hall were suspended for six games, the team was fined $2500 for bringing the game into disrepute and suspended from playing in any CRL competition for one month.
The club was also asked to pay a $1000 good-behaviour bond for bringing the game into disrepute.
Celebration's Leon Jarden was suspended for six games, and the team and club received the same sanctions as the Bulldogs.